I feel guilty for taking a sick day even though I AM SICK. It’s more work to take a day off than it is to simply show up. Why is this so? I am a teacher.

I haven’t graded anything once I’ve gotten home the past two nights because A. I am sick, and B. I didn’t get home until after 6 yesterday and 5 today because I stayed late to plan and prep and make copies to make my students’ lives easier and their education more enriched. I also didn’t grade anything over fall break because well…would you? I was spending time with my family and seeing friends and having a life. Am I justified in not grading during all that time? Sure. Do I feel guilty and anxious because a kid asked me today when the grades would be in, and my principal told me that a parent at a PTO meeting made a comment on the delay in the last essay grades being entered in the grade book? YES. Am I completely justified in why the last essay grade was delayed so much? The average grade was an F as in FAILING, and the average number of comments was 59! I can grade quickly, or I can grade thoroughly. Which would parents prefer? I thought so. Regardless, due to my anxiety and frustration and unnecessary, illogical guilt, I am sincerely considering taking time tomorrow while I’m home SICK to grade papers.

There is something sincerely wrong with teachers. We should qualify for free mental health care.